Better broadband coverage can create economic ‘highways’ in rural Wisconsin Wisconsin ranks below average among the 50 states when it comes to high-speed Internet access, according to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. A major reason for the state’s mediocre ranking is access in rural Wisconsin.WSJ reporter Tom Still also suggested the very party responsible for killing broadband's roll out is now ready to help:
It’s also a priority in the Legislature, where the Assembly Committee on Energy and Utilities, chaired by state Rep. Mike Kuglitsch, R-New Berlin, has taken an interest in rural broadband needs.
Taken an interest, how nice. Maybe Tom Still forget why we’re in the middle of the pack? Here’s a reminder from Journal Sentinel reporter Rick Barrett (hint, Scott Walker and his band of Republican pirates). Federal money would have extended service to schools, libraries and rural areas throughout the less profitable parts of the state:
|April 2013 Numbers|
Some businesses in southwest Wisconsin have complained that even though they are located only blocks from a high-speed Internet connection, they can't get the service extended to them.Look at the numbers and the rejected $23 million from the fed. It's all part of the supposed "failed" stimulus:
But state officials turned down a $23 million federal grant aimed at delivering broadband to more schools and libraries. Among other things, federal officials wanted a commitment that the infrastructure the grant would fund would be used 20 years or more. Otherwise, Wisconsin would have to repay the money. "The details associated with that grant, and the strings attached to it, made it unworkable. It was the right decision to send the money back," said Bill Esbeck, executive director of the Wisconsin State Telecommunications Association, which represents broadband providers in rural areas. He disagrees with the assessment that large parts of rural Wisconsin lack broadband.
USDA’s Rural Utilities Service is currently on target to complete over $3 billion in Recovery Act investments ensuring that rural communities and anchor institutions are connected to high-speed broadband networks.